Heart-rending. Kendra is in therapy, trying to come to terms with abuse that she suffered as a young child. At the tender age of 15, those painful memories are surfacing. Just as she seems to be getting closer to the roots of her problems, her life is being ripped apart again by parents who don’t seem to understand her.
This book is compelling. In 42 short chapters it ripped Kendra apart, and slowly put her back together again. For that matter, it ripped me apart as well. I identified with so many things in this book, and it was painful to read. Kendra is a believable, well-realised character that is so much more than the events that have shaped her. She has her art (and cutting) as an outlet, and I only wish I could create things like she does.
I hesitate to file this under angst, because really, it’s so much more than that. Sexual abuse and physical abuse are nothing to be laughed at, particularly as they have such long lasting effects on their victims. People like Kendra don’t want to be victims, they want to stand up for themselves, but it is so hard facing what has been done to them.
Just to top off an already awesome, amazing book, this has queer elements in it. Lesbians, gays – and the accompanying homophobia that sadly does still accompany it. Also the assumption that being gay is a choice. Although the ending is satifying, I kind of long for a sequel, to know how things turn out for them both.
This is a book that you will find yourself thinking about long after you have finished reading it. The real issues it raises, the multitude of questions it tries to answer, everything. It was everything I hoped for in reading it.
This book is perhaps not one you’d be comfortable reading in public. The cover art is very provocative. It’s also relatively triggering for those who have survived abuse or have self-harmed at some point (recovering or current).
I’d recommend this book for older teens, and adults. Yes, it’s a YA fiction, but it’s a great insight into how a teen’s mind can work under stress. Please, put this on your to-read immediatly shelf. It is worth reading. This is my 60th review reward book, and I’m so glad I chose this book. It’s a well-spent $8, even if it’s reading time for me was just under 2 hours. Yes, it’s not going to be to everyone’s taste, but please, make an effort. It could just open your own eyes so that you can save others, or perhaps realise that you aren’t alone. My recent rediscovery of Goodreads helped me find this book. I’m glad I did.